Monday, February 29, 2016


I can say that I have not done the genetics or the DNA tests that help establish your family lines. It is to help you find your respective line so there will be no mistakes in your family tree. I know someone who has done it, and I actually have not asked them about it, but maybe I should. I try to know my family line, but so many people want to claim individual stories to their line, that the lines get muddled.

The DNA tests are supposed to solve that problem. It takes the guesswork out of finding your right family line. I am also wondering if it takes the fun out of finding the family names? Is it part of the fun for you? I know I love the detective work, but even detectives use all tools available. One reason I have not done this is because of the money it costs. I know it costs, but I am not sure how much, nor have I looked into it.

I am always looked at as being a unique individual. I pride myself on that and have no problem saying I do not want ot do that test. If I did, I could solve the mystery that is me on all sides of my tree. I could know why I have certain issues, and I could know who is my true patriarch that established my line here in America. That would be a boon, but...

Knowing the true lines can be a blessing and if you are a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints , then you would be doubly blessed to know this information. Knowledge is not a bad thing, unless it is the wrong knowledge. Be careful what you wish for, you just might get it.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Reading Headstones

I love old gravesites and graveyards. There is something very peaceful about them. They are also very informative or can be if you can read the headstones. But what if the headstone is old and weather worn? Well, there are at least three things I know you can do to make a headstone legible.

One, spray it down with water. Lightly spray the headstone, without soaking the words. The letter impressions will show up against the darker outside stone. Then you will be able to read the headstone and take pictures as well as copy the letters onto paper.

Second, you can go on a sunny day, and try to position a mirror under the letters so that the light shines across the front so the letter impressions are highlighted. Then you may be able to take a picture and copy the lettering so you can have a hard copy of the headstone to go with the pictures.

Third, the old standby, rubbing. Please do this gently. Very gently. Do it with graphite and onion paper so there is no friction and no need to rub hard. I do not like this idea, but sometimes, this is the only way that one can read a headstone.

I like the old graveyards, but the cemetaries of today have legible headstones. It is a trade-off. Of course, most ancestors are in the older graveyards and we are looking for our older ancestors.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Stumbling Around in the Dark

I like to Google the words to Family History because it gives me new topics and insights into genealogy. I have found many helpful web pages by using this wonderful search engine. Sometimes we must stumble around in the dark until we find the light switch.

This time, I stumbled across a great website called The Federation, and it seems to be a treasure trove of information. The Federation of Family History Societies is a collection of many genealogy societies, across the pond, that can tie you to many subjects.

I have also stumbled across the topics board at This board has access to many topics that are being discussed on there at any given moment. I saw boards on DNA and family bibles as well as ethnicity and adoptions. There may be some valuable answers here.

It does not matter where you find your information, as long as you cite it so you can find it again, and you don't plagiarize, you can use it to build your tree. Information is accessible if we learn how to search for it. If we are willing to take a leap of faith and say yes, that is them, and then search that line till you find the link or the unlink, then you are well on your way.

Prayer and fortitude are what are called for when it comes to Family History. There are days that you do not want to quit because there is so much information coming in, and then there are days that there are no new lines of investigation. Either way, it is sometimes a blessing to stumble in the dark. It makes you search for the light switch that much harder.


Wednesday, February 17, 2016

County Lines

I was traveling in the mountains with my husband this weekend and I realized that the county lines that was once in an area, are no longer the lines. County lines have changed over the years and I am not so sure that it does not create a lot of issues. I have been looking for certain family members and I try to find them in one county, but now I am thinking I need to check the county lines and see if they were changed in that time period. It would explain so much.

I do not often think about the county lines and how they have changed over the years. I would love to have an old map of the United States and its counties. In this way, I could find out where the lines were, and compare them to now. It might make a difference in finding lost family members or not.

My family has not ever had a lot of money, except back in the days before America. They may not be on the books because they were in debtors prison, or maybe they moved and I cannot find them because of that. Moving was not always a hard thing. Land was a grab bag and one could just homestead almost anywhere.

This makes it hard to find family at times. If they move and leave no forwarding address, how does one go about finding the elusive family? This is where one must really comb the census records, even in areas that you did not know there was any family there. They may have been in another state in that ten year period. If that happens, well one must be prepared for anything, so you find them and YAY your family line goes on.

The important thing to remember is to not give up. Just because they are not in the county you expected, does not mean they are not somewhere. They have to be, right?

Friday, February 12, 2016

Family First

I have a friend that is about to lose her mother, and she is having a hard time dealing with it. It is, after all, her mommy. Her first love and her first everything. Mothers supply so much in our lives that we use and grow on. Our compassion and willingness to give and serve and love all comes from a mother's touch.

The link to the past and the person that you have known all your life, and who has known you your whole life, that gave you life, is about to go on to the next stage in her continual development. I have tried to tell the daughter that we chose this, that we knew how hard our lives would be and how we would lose the one's we love.

This is the reason we do genealogy. We want to stay connected to the past and to the future. Our ancestor's and our posterity do this for us. As we look and find our ancestor's, we give them life again. We bring them to mind and allow them to be among this world again for a moment in time.

How many times have you felt the ancestor directing and driving you to the place you need to be. Like going to a cemetery and praying to find your family member, and find them among all the headstones.  This is true inspiration and that comes from beyond the veil.

We are so blessed to be living in this era and time. We have our ancestors at our fingertips and we can find them with the touch of a button. How great is this?!

Thursday, February 11, 2016


I went to church last night to the Family History Center and the computers there are locked with a password and no public patron can use the computers. This creates problems because we rely on the public's usage to stay open. Not that we charge, but if no one uses us, then we can lose our funding. I am so frustrated because for weeks I have been having technical issues with the computers and this does not help.

I wanted to do some work last night, but I was so wrapped up in the computers, I did not get to. I am writing today before I do my genealogy because I want to write my mom and dad's story of how they met. I think it is crazy and sweet.

My mon was out with her friends at the movies and was sitting with her girlfriends. My mom thought my dad was cute and said so to her friend. Her friend, Shirley told my dad what my mom said. Then my dad moved up to sit beside her. He was with friends as well. He left them where they were and moved up beside my mom.

After the movie, they parted ways. Mom went home with her friends and did not think about dad much. Daddy was already in love with mom so he showed up at her house. She wanted to go out with her friends but she couldn't. My grandmother was holding her because my dad was there. He actually hid his truck so she would not see it and surprised her. They talked for hours and that is that.

This union created five children, 13 grandchildren, 22 great grandkids and who knows how many more? It is such a wonderful thing to see our posterity growing.  Thanks, Mom and Dad. I love you.

It is not the greatest love story but it has withstood time. This year on April 26th they will be married for 60 years. I am in awe of that and am so very grateful for the example that they are.

Thia is my mother's aunt on her mothers side.


Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Too Long

It has been too long since I have posted. I have not been doing too much genealogy as I have been busy with my living family. They are the best and require my attention at times. It is my adopted family, so to speak, that requires my attention. I know that my ancestors are calling and tonight I will answer that call.

A call comes that brings us back to our ancestors, and sometimes we have to answer that call. It becomes loud and necessary. I have the call and have been ignoring it for so long now. I need to deal with everyday life and it becomes hard to do my family work as well as all I do.

I am making excuses for not doing that which I have made a promise to do. It is something that I need to do. I feel that I have been lax in many things in my life. My family work is just one of the facets that I have fallen short in. I strive to do too much, or maybe I just cannot fit all things in every day.

I need to make a schedule so I can devote some time each week to family history, even if not twice a week. I do not think it is something that I will be able to do every day, but I want to be able to devote time every week. I know I am not the only one that struggles to find time every week, so I am going to post my schedule and maybe that will help.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

War TImes

I have been looking at my family line on my father's side and realized that all his family generations, until now, have been military. We even had a member become military in this generation, but he chose to leave and let his wife stay. I am amazed that so many of my family were willing to sacrifice and give of their selves to their country.

I have traced my lineage on my father's patriarchal side back to 0719 and have found that even back then we were in the military. Of course, we also were kings and queens of small parcels of land so being military was required. I found that we fought in the war that teh movie Braveheart was made for.

It is so strange, but it is also wonderful. I know my grandfather told a few stories of what happened to him while he was in Okinawa. There was one about how this young boy wanted to go home. My grandfather was a medic and the boy looked at him and said, "Doc, shoot me so I can go home." My grandfather told him he could not do it. The next day the boy was shot and died. He was sent home just not the way he expected.

My grandfather felt guilty for that young man's death for many years. He felt that he should have done more for that boy, but there was no way he could shoot him, even in the leg. I am glad that my grandfather did not shoot the boy, even though he died. I believe my granddaddy would have never forgiven himself if he would have shot that boy and the boy died from complications. War is rough and it is never over for those that live it.

The records that are from the different wars can help us find our family that may have been a prisoner in the wars. They also help us find the wives that drew a compensation from the military. As we search these records, we find information that we may not have known, like the color of their eyes and hair. It is so much fun to find a draft card or military card and see the information that crings the person to life again, at least for a moment in time.